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Sooner than he should take me unto wife,
I'd seek my death by poison !

MARGARET. That is badly said.

IOLA (speaking violently). 'Tis MURDER either way. (Pause.) I choose my path!

MARGARET (frightened).
Think no more on this; and I will try
What my old wits can do, my pretty lamb.

IOLA (throws her arms around Margaret's neck).
Dear nurse—my own, good, kind, old, gentle nurse!
Ha ! ha! I knew so very well! Ha! ha!
Sweet nurse—you 'd not consent to this !

MARGARET.
You fond and coaxing little girl !
How the thunder roars !

(Thunder.)

IOLA.
Oh! what's the storm without to that within !

(Folds her hands over her bosom.) Did Master Grimes appoint the day in which He should return ?

MARGARET.
Not the very day.

IOLA.
Oh! my father; would you were near me now!

MARGARET.
And when he comes; good by to poor Adele !
Her merry tales—her songs of love and death-
Her fortune-telling—and to all our sport ! (Knock.)

IOLA (clapping her hands). Adele! Adele! The door-the door!

(Margaret opens the door, L. H. U. E.) I am so glad to see you !

(Enter Adele.)

ADELE (advancing).
Dear Iola! the storm is walking earth,
Clothed with live thunder: and the white lightning
Is brushing the ground ! oh! most fearfully!

MARGARET.
Dear, dear, how very wet you are !

(Advancing to Adele.)

IOLA. She shall change her dress !

(To Margaret.)

ADELE.

I thank you kindly—no.

IOLA.

Well you, my gentle gipsy, are as firm
As I with Sir William Stanton was this morn !
Would you had been here !

(Sits down.) ADELE (starting). Speak! speak!

IOLA.

0! I have been threatened, Adele! Threatened With fate most dreadful by Sir William !

ADELE (violently.--voice half breaking ). Where is he?

IOLA (rises). Ha ! how you stare ! Adele! Adele !

ADELE. Ha ! sweetest. Ha!

(Violent noise outside.)

MARGARET.
The wind does force the doors—I'll fasten them.

(Exit Margaret.) IOLA (advancing). Think you I should make a pretty gipsy?

ADELE. Too lovely. Oh! my fair!

IOLA.

Then I'll try your gipsy hat. Nay, that is rude !
How dark your eyes are !

ADELE.

It is the light of yours which makes them so !

IOLA (takes off the hat).
Now the hat is off. Why! why!
That hair !—'t is not-'t is not like mine !

(Starting back.)

ADELE.

Oh, lady !-I am not what I seem !

(Kneeling.)

IOLA.

Who art thou ?

ADELE (throwing off a cloak). I am thy lover, Iola !

(Very passionately.) IOLA (frightened-running into a corner). Art thou a man? Oh! come not near me !

LESTER (approachesIola shrinks). Lady ! how can I crave forgiveness ?

IOLA.

That voice—that voice! I pray you come not near me !

(Supplicating.) LESTER (gradually approaching). Oh, fear me not! Hear me! hear me! ( Spoken rapidly.) Oh, let me breathe my everlasting love, And pour my fond heart's overflowing joy To thee!

(Noises outside. Voices heard.)

IOLA (starting). That voice! (Lester draws himself up in an attitude

of determination, one arm being around

Iola's waist.)

VOICE ( outside in flat). I 'll burst the door!

(Violent noise.) (Iola disengages herself from Lester, and

Lester advances to the door.)

IOLA.

My father's voice !-I'm lost !

LESTER.

My life is thine!

(The door is burst open. Enter Grimes.)

GRIMES (pointing to dress on floor).
What masqueradings here?
Who art Thou? Die, ruffian !

(Draws dagger and rushes at him.) IOLA (rushes to her father and clings to him). Spare him! Kill me!-kill me!

(Form picture. Pause.)

GRIMES.

Who are you, sir ? Ha! that face !

LESTER.

Master Grimes—I love your daughter!

GRIMES (to Iola). Madam ! what is 't I hear?

IOLA.

Father! I LOVE him !

LESTER.

Most noble girl!

GRIMES.
False-hearted child-thou hast deceived me.

LESTER.
She has not, Master Grimes,
For I am the deceiver--1, alone!
In yon disguise, good Master Grimes, I came
The very evening you the journey took ;
And with a little basket on my arm,
And harmless stories resting on my tongue,
I gained th' admission here which you refused.
And now, I've won her heart, good Master Grimes,

(Taking Iola's hand, and kissing it-Iola is on a chair.)
Give your consent: for never, 'till within
A space of time too small to name, was she
Aware I was not what I seemed. Good sir,
Your pardon, and your blessing !

GRIMES.

Rise, sir—my daughter's hand is yours.
I shall expect you here to-morrow morn
To claim her as your wife! Good night. (Going.)
Poor credulous fools. (Aside.)

(Exit Grimes, R. H. V. E.)
LESTER (advancing to lola).
What! not a word
To bid bright hope rise o'er my aching heart ?
Speak-speak, oh! speak! give breathing utterance,
Nor let the ruby portal of thy thoughts
Keep thoughts its prisoner !
Dost weep ?-Dost weep, my fairest ? Oh, those tears
Which course the marble of thy bloodless cheeks
Are to my heart as fire! Speak—speak! Oh, speak !

IOLA. 'Tis past belief; and yet not past the truth !

LESTER.
My sweetest !

IOLA.
Oh, I am lost-for ever, ever, lost!
Beneath the icy coldness of his speech
A fire more furious than Vesuvius burns !
How that dread eye glared on me!

LESTER.

My loved one! thy great fears do magnify
The evil!
For Master Grimes has given thee to me!
And what care I for that the world can do,
When thy sweet eyes are more than worlds to me!

IOLA.
What is your name?

LESTER. Tis Lester Burton.

IOLA. Oh, you

have once deceived me ! May you not again?

(Rain and thunder.)

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